A warning - once you try a real non-detergent-based soap to shave with, you'll never use a commercial shaving cream again!
An excellent shaving soap is a bit different than a regular bath soap. As Michael Ham recommends in his book "Leisureguy's Guide to Gourmet Shaving," a shaving soap should be:
- abundant [in lather]
- long lasting
For this project you'll need:
- Melt and Pour soap base - I'm using a plain white base, though you can use shaving, clear, aloe, goat's milk or other base well.
- 2 tsps. of clay per pound of soap base - I prefer Bentonite clay, though you can use Kaolin, Rhassoul or Fuller's Earth (Buy soapmaking clays direct)
- 1 tsp. of liquid glycerin per pound of soap. The glycerin helps build the volume and stability of the lather, and adds a bit of moisturizing.
- A mug, cup or tin to put the soap into
- Fragrance or Essential oil appropriate for the person using the soap - be sure that it's mild enough for sensitive skin - I'm using a light combination of lavender, orange and patchouli
- Basic understanding and equipment for melt and pour soap making
- And though not part of the recipe, you'll also need a shaving brush. (Buy Direct)
- Melt your soap base in the microwave or a double boiler
- Once it's melted, add in 2 tsps. of clay for each pound of soap base you've melted
- Stir well, making sure that all of the clay gets dissolved
- Add in the glycerin and your fragrance or essential oil and stir
- Pour it into your mugs or cups. If you have gotten a lot of bubbles from stirring, just spritz them with a bit of rubbing alcohol
- When the soap has cooled and thickened a bit, give it one more gentle stir. The clay can sometimes have a tendency to settle to the bottom of the mug.